October 17, 2010

Dining on Dogwood

Dogwood Sawfly larva (Macremphytus testaceus)
Earlier this month, I received several inquiries about these white "caterpillars" who appeared to be decimating some of the swamp (or silky) dogwood shrubs at Great Meadows NWR/Concord.  Checking in with Sam Jaffe, he advised that these are the larvae of the Dogwood sawfly.  Adult females can lay up to 100 eggs on the underside of a single leaf, so it's no surprise that an entire shrub's foliage can be consumed in fairly short order.

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